CNN’s The New Promise Land: Silicon Valley
When you’re asked to think of Silicon Valley icons, people like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg come to mind, but if your asked to think of African-Americans in Silicon Valley most people draw a blank and Soledad O’Brien’s new documentary The New Promise Land: Silicon Valley looks at a group of people that are trying to change that. The documentary which airs on CNN this Sunday, November 13 at 8pm is the latest from her Black in America series and focuses on a group of 8 black technology entrepreneurs from varied backgrounds living together in a summer incubator program which facilitates and helps prepare their product demos.
The documentary is informative beyond even the racial question as it outlines that path that is taken from getting the concept of a product down the path to pitching the demo to investors and even Anthony Frasier, CEO of the video game app Playd, and an entrepreneur featured in the film told me “it’s really just about putting out a great product.” Nevertheless, like anything else, who you know is key and the incubator fast tracks the group toward pitches at Google headquarters and in front of numerous potential investors with interesting and mixed results.
The racial questions that the film stirs up are interesting and the idea that Silicon Valley is a land of “white college dropouts and Asians” is put to the test, but identifying the reality of what it takes to make it in the industry is certainly interesting to watch.